Paragon of Sin

Chapter 172: Ascendant - Zuhei

The events from several weeks ago spurred quite a commotion. From below the Sky Layer, it was as if three storms of blazing infernos erupted mercilessly above. The entire sky was dyed a hue of burning red and temperatures throughout had increased to nearly unbearable levels. Those with low cultivations at the sixth, fifth, and fourth levels of the Extreme Creation Mountain had to descend due to the overwhelming heat emissions.

While this was only temporary, the gaping holes in the second, third, and final Sky Layers that could be observed by those of high cultivation from below was exceptionally mind-shaking!

Unverified rumors were widely spreading with all sorts of assumptions and many individuals investigated this matter. There were even whispers of an impending attack from the San Clan, the peak hegemonic power of the entire Tri-Vision Starfield! They were widely known for their fire cultivators, so this gave credence to such rumors.

The fear, uncertainty, and shock ceaselessly circulated until an official announcement was made that shook the entire sect, planet, and even astral territory:

”There was no attack. There is no incoming danger. The newly appointed Heavenly King Wei was responsible for this incident regarding the Sky Layers, but it was committed under the supervision and approval of the Prime Imperial Sages and Grand Imperial Sage. ”

This statement of information caused the already exploding commotion to ignite to an even greater level. The upper-echelon of the Extreme Creation Mountain gave permission for Heavenly King Wei to blow a hole in the sky?! To rise ambient temperatures to unbearable levels?! All of this was approved?!

What the f…

The smarter ones could only roll their eyes in disbelief at a cover-up, others could only pout in discontent, and quite a few had eyes filled with reverence and passion. Heavenly King Wei ’s title of being the Second Coming of the King of Everlore or the Prince of Everlore was already being spread like a flame through a dry forest throughout the world, and now he was responsible for a world-shaking event?

He had merely arrived less than four months ago! First, he became a Sky Noble directly off the rip while at the Qi Condensation Realm. After, he orchestrated the eradication of the Grand Axis Faction and brutally killed an Astral Core Realm expert at the Second Stage. Before then, his abilities were seemingly verified as a King Alchemist and subsequently received a promotion to a Heavenly King within a week of entry!

This was an absolute whirlwind of legendary events, and it still hadn ’t stopped!

At the moment, Wei Wuyin ’s name was the talk of the town, and many were fiercely watching his every move in hopes of seeing what he did next.

While they did so, from the Sky Layer, a pegasus carrying two figures descended with purpose.

”Lord Wei, our first target is? ” Su Mei quietly probed as the wind coursed through her hair, her black robes fluttering intensely due to the intense flight. Wei Wuyin sat next to her, his silver eyes examining the Extreme War Mountain.

She knew all seventeen candidates. They fit the strict parameters of Wei Wuyin ’s designation, but they were all problematic. Some of them weren ’t even a part of the sect. Instead, they were rogue cultivators, wanted criminals, or even prisoners. She was startled how only two of the seventeen actually fit his desires, but she understood his intentions.

Wei Wuyin calmly looked ahead, his gaze clear and unobstructed by confusion or hesitation. After a moment, he responded: ”Zuhei. ” He spoke only a single word yet Su Mei shook slightly. This name was one of the few one ’s she personally dreaded.

Zuhei.

It was a single name, but in the sect, it was like a word of blood, slaughter, and death. It was taboo. The story went like this:

One hundred and sixty years ago.

Myriad Monarch Sect, Extreme War Mountain.

There was a young male beastman with the bloodline of the Silver Wolf. He wasn ’t particularly strong; in fact, he was merely average amongst his race with a weak bloodline lineage, but he was a legacy. His family was born and bred members of the Myriad Monarch Sect from the beginning. While they weren ’t heavily invested, connected, or high-ranked, they continuously produced top-tier Mortal Captain Elders.

This young beastman was similarly of that caliber, and his future path seemed to be predetermined. This was what everyone expected, likely even himself. Until a single day changed it all…

His mother was coveted; his father was challenged; his little brother was executed. His entire life was flipped upside down due to one event, but that single event birthed a monster.

It was because on that day…he birthed Slaughter Intent amidst the blood of his enemies and killed his way through the world, and he couldn ’t be stopped. Despite his lackluster cultivation base, he plowed through countless members until he made his way to his sworn enemy ’s doorstep.

But he failed.

He was captured and imprisoned, crippled, and sentenced to death by old age. A cruel punishment for those beastmen who have natural lifespans that could rival beasts.

The important aspect was that he had given birth to Slaughter Intent. Even amongst Astral Core Realm experts, giving birth to Intent was exceptionally difficult, especially ethereal intent. After all, while one ’s cultivation base could change, one ’s comprehension was mostly set.

To better understand the rarity of Intent, one needs to understand what Intent was. It was a strange power that could change the fundamental characteristics of the Metaphysical, Mind, Body, Spirit, and Essence. It heightened every aspect of cultivation, including the purity of specific energy.

An example of this was Wei Wuyin ’s five advanced elements—Steel Metal, Violet Lightning, Life Meadow Wood, Blazing Inferno Magma, and Absolute Zero Ice. These were all Intents birthed alongside the elements, but compared to Ethereal Intents, they were thousands of times easier, yet they were still exceptionally difficult to do so. Even the basic characteristics of these elements could be classified as Intent Seeds.

While resources were more readily available in this world, comprehension couldn ’t be forced, so there were still high-level, thousand year old Astral Core Realm experts with merely the four basic elements—Fire, Earth, Wind, and Water—birthed.

These Intents were manifested by the Spirit, capable of influencing Metaphysical Qi, and refining essence into energy.

There were those like Na Xinyi and Qing Qiumu with unique physiques that automatically allowed them to give birth to these Intents, allowing them to cultivate Wood Qi and Yin Qi with utter ease.

This young beastman had given birth to this exceptionally difficult and monstrous Intent. But, Intent wasn ’t everything in cultivation, nor did it define potential on the path of cultivation, merely combat prowess. If it did, then Long Chen, a wielder of Slaughter and Sword Intent, would ’ve been automatically classified as a Heavenly King upon entry.

Unfortunately, Intent was often overlooked because it didn ’t help orthodox cultivation. In the Astral Core Realm, one had to comprehend the specific aspects of that phase and then challenge the subsequent Astral Tribulation. However, just because a person was skilled in learning math did not mean they were talented in composing poetry. In a sense, they were two different things and barely helped each other in terms of understanding.

This was the general belief of the world.

Su Mei understood this as well. She had thoroughly comprehended the truths and standards of this grander world, and knew their underappreciated belief towards Intent. While it provided one with exceptional combat prowess, it would only be given a glance when paired with cultivation talent. Yet these two things were exceptionally difficult to obtain in life.

This may be an easily dismissed trait for others, but not Wei Wuyin.

He wanted those with Intent. He needed those with Intent.

This was why there were merely seventeen qualified candidates out of trillions of people! This was how rare Intent outside of the elements were, especially Ethereal Intents!

As an Alchemist, how could he put any importance on cultivation talent? With the Dao of Alchemy, changing someone ’s talent was a matter of if he desired not if he could.

Woosh!

They flew until they reached the Extreme War Mountain. In all the mountains, there was a well-known yet unspoken series of levels to each of them, and they were underground levels that stored prisoners and the core areas of various grand-sized astral arrays. In fact, it was rumored that each of the Extreme Mountains were array flags to a planetary astral array that could obliterate an entire continental flat earth!

This area which housed prisoners in the Extreme War Mountain was called the Hell Layer of War. It was gloomy and dark, buried and guarded. Wei Wuyin and Su Mei arrived at the first level ’s entrance to the Hell Layer of War.

As his pegasus landed, there were two figures awaiting with calm gazes. One of them was a chubby human male with a bald head and sunken eyes, while the other was a demon with a scarred face and skinny body. He didn ’t have any eyes, but there were eye sockets that seemed to resemble the depths of an abyss.

Wei Wuyin and Su Mei leapt off, and the two figures hurried forward with swift steps and bowed.

”Greetings, Heavenly King Wei. ” They were both in synchronized fashion, yet it didn ’t seem practiced. Wei Wuyin calmly smiled as he regarded these two men. They were members of the Knights of Enforcement and they guarded the Hell Layer of War ’s entrance, and their cultivation bases were impressive.

Wei Wuyin calmly swept his gaze on these two, ”He ’s still alive? ”

The two felt a shiver. Despite Wei Wuyin ’s weak cultivation, they felt an instinctive fear in their hearts in his presence. While they were normally tasked with handling criminals, the news that had circulated thus far had deeply shook their hearts. Furthermore, it seemed that in a mere few months, his connections and influence had reached unheard of levels.

They were given orders to await his arrival for several days now, and said to follow all his orders. Now that they could personally see and observe Wei Wuyin, their hearts were unable to stop quaking in shock.

For a human, Wei Wuyin had looks that could bring an Immortal ’s to shame, and he lacked a hint of femininity that most handsome men possessed. His features were defined, symmetric, and honed by an unseen force. When they felt his subdued aura, their spirits felt inferior to him! This affected their mental states immediately, and cold sweat rolled down their backs and forehead.

Wei Wuyin ’s every breath was accompanied by a faint, world-shaking draconic roar that was inaudible to normal ears, but easily picked up by the spiritual sense. His silver eyes glistened with pure mental energies that destabilized the mind ’s of others. It was as if he could read their minds.

It was frightening.

This was the boundless, unintended benefits brought about by the transformation of his Natal Souls when they achieved the Zenith Mortal State, birthed Zenith Essence, and gained the ability of permanence. He felt like a Mortal God!

Shockingly, while others felt this in a clear manner, Su Mei felt entirely undisturbed by his newfound aura from the beginning. Her heartbeat and reaction was leveled, and nothing seemed to affect her spirit and state of mind.

Wei Wuyin glanced at Su Mei who acted completely indifferent and calm, her spiritual sense quietly spread as if on guard against the unknown. Despite that, she was entirely unaffected.

After a brief thought, he turned his gaze back to the two knights.

Only then did they snap out of their daze and hurriedly answered with a slight skip in speech, ”Y-yes! He ’s still alive. ” The demon answered, his eyeless holes were tilted and seemingly staring at Wei Wuyin ’s feet.

Wei Wuyin shook his head and walked forward. The entrance to the Hell Layer of War was deep underground, and it was a steel door etched with various esoteric markings that led to a narrowly descending staircase. Its dim lightning and dark passage made it seem as if one was truly visiting Hell.

”Let ’s go. It ’s time to meet Zuhei. ”

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